Cyrus S. Poonawalla

Last Updated on August 24, 2020

Dr. Cyrus S. Poonawalla is an Indian Parsi businessman, also known as the “vaccine king of India, the chairman of Poonawalla Group, which includes Serum Institute of India, the Indian biotech company that manufactures paediatricvaccines. Serum Institute exports vaccines to over 165 countries and one out of every two children in the world was vaccinated by a vaccine of Serum Institute of India. Hurun Global Rich List – 2019 listed Dr. Poonawalla as the 4th richest person in India and 100th in the world with a net worth of $ 13 billion.

Dr. Cyrus Poonawalla
Born1941 (age 78–79)
Alma materBMCC
Years active1966–present
OrganizationSerum Institute of India
Known forFounder of Serum Institute of India, Horse Racing, Cars
Net worthUS$13 billion (February 2020)
Spouse(s)Villoo Poonawalla
ChildrenAdar Poonawalla (son)
AwardsPadma Shri (2005)

Education and career

According to Forbes June 2020 rankings, Poonawalla’s net worth is $11.4 billion and he is ranked the 7th richest person in India and the 165th richest person in the world. He attended The Bishop’s School in Pune, and later graduated from Brihan Maharashtra College of Commerce, University of Pune, in 1966.


Pawar family celebrates patriarch's birthday with Cyrus Poonawalla

Poonawalla was married to Villoo Poonawalla, who died in 2010 They have a son, Adar, who currently works as the CEO of Serum Institute of India.

Poonawalla stud farms: How Cyrus Poonawalla's son, Adar Poonawalla ...


Bill Gates presents award to Dr Cyrus Poonawalla

He was awarded the Padma Shri by Hon’ble President of India, Dr. A. P. J.  Abdul Kalam in 2005.

He was awarded the Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year 2007” in the category of Healthcare & Life Sciences on 20th November 2007.

He was awarded the Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year 2014” on 5th February 2015.

He was awarded Honorary Degree of ‘Doctor of Humane Letters’ by The University of Massachusetts Medical School on 3rd June 2018.

He was awarded Honorary Doctorate of Science by the University of Oxford on 26th June 2019.


In May 2019 it was reported that Poonawalla, in partnership with Naum Koen, has proposed supplying Ukraine with 100 thousand doses of measles vaccine for free vaccination.